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The Retail Apocalypse Rages On, Closing More Kmart, Sears, and Macy's Stores

Image via Getty
Image via Getty

Last March the New York Times reported that Kmart and Sears were suffering in the face of online retail, as well as being unfortunately located in older neighborhoods and malls. And now both retailers including Macy’s will be closing more locations across the country due to the ongoing retail apocalypse.

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NPR reports that on January 4 the Sears Holdings Corp. announced it would be closing 64 Kmart stores and 39 Sears stores, mostly in the Midwest or East Coast, while continuing to shut down “unprofitable stores.” Macy’s also announced they would be closing 11 locations this year, one piece of a larger plan to close 100 stores total in the next few years.

The so-called retail apocalypse, which led to 8,000 bankruptcies and store closings across retailers last year, is the result of several different problems: a rise in fast fashion, consumers opting for “experiences” over objects, and of course easy online shopping is pulling people away from malls and brick and mortar stores in general. And as someone who likes to buy things in person, especially clothes, I rue the day when the only way to obtain even basic items (produce? life saving medicine?!) will be through a computer screen.

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You might soon find yourself “personally touched by the retail apocalypse,” like my colleague Kelly Stout did while trying to find an item called “Musher’s Secret” (which she explained “protects dogs’ paws, anuses, and elbows from cold weather” completely unprompted) at your local PHYSICAL retailer, only to be told to “go online.” How rude!

Pop Culture Reporter, Jezebel

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DISCUSSION

totorrorising
TotorroRising

Every time I hear that another swath of K Marts are closing, I worry. My hometown’s KMart (rural NY) is the only non-food store that’s standing. It’s a desperately poor area where many people’s lives are constrained by the fact that always-reliable cars are a luxury, and the KMart is a necessary walkable option. Without it kids couldn’t get their warm coats, prescriptions couldn’t get filled, you can buy spaghetti and sauce for under three dollars which is a pretty good meal for a family of four. Kids might have pads to share at school, and there are desk tops in the library, but these are not people who can or will regularly shop online. No Walmart—-hell, even Dollar Tree wasn’t interested—-would come to this town if Kmart closes.

And its a source of good employment. Farmers use it as an extra income. Senior citizens supplement their checks. The store is clean and stocked as well as possible. People take pride in the store. If it goes it could be devastating to the town.

OK- rant over. Reading the snarky “meth central’ comments got me upset.